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Goal-line technology approved by International Football Association Board, with first use to be at Club World Cup

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Goal-line technology could be introduced in the Premier League midway through the 2012-13 season after it was approved by the International Football Association Board (IFAB) in Zurich.

Two systems – Hawk-Eye and GoalRef – have passed FIFA’s criteria for use.

The technology will first be used at December’s FIFA Club World Cup and, if successful, at the 2013 Confederations Cup and 2014 World Cup.

The Premier League said it wanted it “as soon as practically possible.”

A statement following IFAB’s announcement added: “The Premier League has been a long-term advocate of goal-line technology.

“We welcome today’s decision by IFAB and will engage in discussions with both Hawkeye and GoalRef in the near future with a view to introducing goal-line technology as soon as is practically possible.”

Goal-line technology approved by International Football Association Board, with first use to be at Club World Cup

Goal-line technology approved by International Football Association Board, with first use to be at Club World Cup

FA general secretary Alex Horne said it was up to the Premier League to decide on a timescale for implementation.

“It may be December until the technology is absolutely finally approved and installed in stadia,” he said at a press conference in Zurich.

“Priority is given to the Fifa Club World Cup in Japan.


“The Premier League need to talk to the two [technology providers] and the clubs. My understanding is that clubs are supportive and, in principle, as long as all clubs agree it could be introduced part-way through the season, it could be before the start of 2013-14 season, it could be part way through.

“It might be that it is possible to have it part way through the [2012-13] season. If all 20 clubs agree a switch-on weekend I don’t think anyone is disadvantaged.”

Alex Horne added that he felt it was “a hugely important day” for football.

“We believe that it is a great day for football. From an English perspective, today is a hugely important day. It is a cause we have had on our agenda for a number of years.

“This is about having the right technology helping the referee in a relatively rare occurrence.”

The systems will require testing after they are installed in each stadium to ensure they are working properly before they can be used, with licenses lasting for 12 months.

Hawk-Eye was tested at Southampton’s St Mary’s Stadium in May and FIFA thanked the FA for its assistance.

A FIFA spokesman said: “We would like to place on record our sincere thanks to the Football Association for their willingness to support the live match tests, a critical part of Test Phase 2 for goal-line technology.”

IFAB was keen to stress that technology will not be used to help referees make any other decisions.

The desire to bring in goal-line technology increased after Ukraine were denied an equaliser after the ball appeared to cross the line in a 1-0 defeat by England at Euro 2012.

That incident led to FIFA president Sepp Blatter throwing his weight behind calls for goal-line technology.

Chelsea manager Roberto Di Matteo said: “We see every season, every big tournament, we need it because there are some crucial moments within those games where you could find the right solution with a bit of technology.”

UEFA president Michel Platini is believed to prefer the use of five match officials, something which was also approved by FIFA on Thursday.

The system, which sees an extra official posted behind each goal-line to monitor action in and around the penalty box, has been on trial since 2008 and was in use during Euro 2012 as well as last season’s Champions League.

Football’s governing body also lifted a ban on women wearing headscarves during games, clearing the way for the participation of many Islamic nations in top-flight competition.